Some call it the Amazon effect. The rise of eCommerce has heavily impacted the way consumers shop, the way retailers sell, and definitely the way the material handling industry addresses supply chain challenges. But what does the Amazon effect mean for material handling?

Amazon represents the gold standard in ease for the consumer when it comes to order and fulfillment. Almost anything you need is easily found, one click away and at your door within two days. This is clearly influencing expectations, not only in business-to-consumer markets, but even in the business-to-business space. Distribution centers across every industry must innovate and evolve.

Is your distribution center ready to take on the realities of an eCommerce world?

Admittedly, successful eCommerce is not solely dependent on distribution centers. Data science, omni- or multi-channel ordering, sales, operational integrations, and much more are all key components of a successful eCommerce strategy. From a fulfillment standpoint, the distribution centers are where opportunities to increase productivity and profitability through automation truly exist. According to a recent JDA Intelligent Manufacturing Survey, 39 percent of companies surveyed are investing in warehouse automation in response to the Amazon effect, as well as to keep up with consumer demands.

What does automation look in the eCommerce industry?

Depending on industry and size of operation, automation can look very different from one organization to another. In industries such as dairy and beverage, palletizers, depalletizers, stackers, and cart loaders have become standard. However, as eCommerce drives faster fulfillment times, the need to improve and maintain these types of automation systems becomes paramount.

How can material handling carts compliment automation?

In addition to automation, companies are looking at various cart solutions to gain efficiencies throughout the eCommerce process. For example, distribution carts streamline delivery of home and business-to-business orders and various cart designs can accommodate your tote sizes and specifications. Order-picking carts designed for in-store and dark store environments make processing orders simpler, and staging carts can hold product in designated areas to support customer pick-up in retail environments.

How can Cannon Equipment help you keep pace with the speed of eCommerce?

We are committed to helping customers find solutions that integrate with their unique processes and workflow. We help companies safely increase efficiencies, reduce costs, and improve operations. How can we help your business stay a step ahead?